It’s that time of year.
Actually, for me, that time of year starts around early September. That time of year that I can only identify as….Wistful.
The dictionary defines it as: “having or showing a feeling of vague or regretful longing.”
The thesaurus gives us words to describe it like: Contemplative. Mournful. Reflective. Nostalgic. Melancholy. Dreamy. Yearning.
September is the month my Dad died. It was sudden. I was young. It changed my life.
September was the beginning of the new school year. Hopeful. Filled with possibility. And a touch of dread.
October is harvest time, Halloween, candy corn, and temperatures getting cooler. …
There is a Buddhist story about a monk who wants to find a quiet place to meditate. After failing to find a quiet enough spot, he decides to get in a boat and go out onto the lake. No one else was around so he was sure he would finally be able to have some peace and quiet to meditate.
Then, out of nowhere, he feels something hit his boat. He opens his eyes — furious — and says, “Who disturbed me while I was meditating?!” He was livid that someone would crash into him like that. …
As I talked to myself, while washing dishes, something was said by someone that I thought was me. It didn’t sound like me, though. What that voice said was something that I had never said before. Something I did not even know that I knew.
It was a sentence very close to one I have said many times in the past, just slightly altered. Changed just enough that the new meaning stopped me mid-scrub. The dishes could wait. I needed to sit down.
The sentence that I used to say went something like this:
“Every time I have attempted a relationship, I have failed.” …
When I first moved to Anchorage, Alaska, I was hired on at The Alaska Zoo as a gardener. Anyone who knows me would laugh at that. I know nothing about plants, flowers, or anything related to gardening! I am challenged just keeping a houseplant alive. Still, I was hired and I showed up at the greenhouse on my first day, ready to, I don’t know, water something!
My supervisor, a young man named Aaron, showed me around, explained how things worked, and also became a good friend. I loved this gig! I had access to pretty much every area of the zoo and was able to spend time with the animals by getting to know their keepers. …
A long time ago, I wanted to be rescued from my life.
I was living with depression, not doing well. I was lonely. I was feeling un-seen, un-wanted, un-needed. I was afraid of the future. My future. I had no idea what was going to happen to me.
I just wanted to be rescued.
So, I fell in love.
And then I fell in love again.
And then, I did it again….Noticing a pattern here?
It’s not that I didn’t truly love the people I fell in love with. I did. I also, however, really wanted to be rescued. …
Seven years ago today, on August 6, my buddy Carl graduated from Earth School. Leaving me without my Guardian, my Brother, one of my great Loves.
They — you know, “they” — say that, at seven years, there is usually some kind of closure experience; a visitation of some kind, that helps the soul — and those left behind as well, I suppose — to move on.
I don’t know if I’m ready for that yet.
When I was in the midst of grieving Carl’s death — which came on the heels of the death of my Soul-Twin, Jimmy — my sister pointed something out to me. I was opining the fact that I have way too many dead friends. She replied, “Well, that’s what comes with having a lot of friends. Less friends? …
About six weeks ago, I decided to start a podcast to talk about how I live with depression. It has been a life-long companion, roommate, bully, and teacher. Choosing to talk about it, and how I have learned to navigate my life alongside it, seemed like a great idea. I could share my stories. I could help people. It’ll be awesome.
And then it came time to actually tell the stories.
Some of the deeper experiences I have survived have only lived as legends inside my own head. For as much as I share publicly, with friends with family, even from the pulpit, there is a good deal of my inner world that no one else has ever known about. …
The night my Dad died, he was playing tennis. It was totally unexpected. My mom got a call that something had happened and she ran out of the house to find him.
My sister and I waited at home.
When my mom returned home, she came through the front door and walked right past us. We followed her to the dining room. She turned, leaned against the wall, put her arms up into a shrug and, through tears, said, “He’s gone.”
I was twelve.
I had already been living with depression, without really knowing what it was called or truly understanding what it mean. It was just this feeling I had. Always there. Not always obvious or noticeable. …
I have lived with depression the entire 57 years of my life on this planet.
I have shared stories about my “adventures” while navigating this experience of living with depression. I’ve even written a one-woman show — with original songs — talking about the way I have moved through the world with this “companion” of mine, the one I call depression.
The one thing I have not really done, ever, is talk about what it’s like from the inside of the experience. …